Saturday, January 31, 2015

January and Pooping Alone

January seems like such a long month. It’s almost over.  January was warmer than normal for which we are thankful.  With above freezing temperatures came rain and ice.

The dirt roads leading off the main highways are like skating rinks.  Honestly you could skate down them.

Icy road

The main roads are much better…of course they have been heavily salted and sanded.

Not much snow

Not much for snow.  Not enough for the snowmobilers.  Without a good blanket of insulating snow septic lines are freezing in our area…so far so good at our house…we have water and we can poop.


Speaking of pooping.  Someone cannot poop alone anymore.  He MUST have company.  If he has the urge to go he pesters you until you go outside with him…not sure what scared him one day when he was pooping… a squirrel…a deer… a wild turkey…a boogie man..only Chance knows for sure… and he is not talking or forgetting about it.  We hope it is just a passing phase.

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Friday, January 30, 2015

Weekly Wrap Up

It was a busy week.  Many projects have been started…few have been finished.

I worked on my peyote stitch bracelet projects.  Started a new pattern not sure if it will work out or not.  In my head it works…but getting that idea to transfer to beads…well we will see.

I started cleaning out the kitchen drawers ..since there are seventeen drawers in my kitchen it takes awhile.  Four are done and that includes the “junk” drawer which took a while.   What would we do without a junk drawer?  Probably throw more “stuff” away.

I worked on carving next years Christmas ornaments…still don’t have any painted to know if it is a go or not.

I shredded tax records that were over seven years old.  I am waiting for W-2’s in the mail…patiently.

I crocheted on my scarf one night…I am still not pleased with the outcome and I may frog it yet again ( rip it apart).

The refrigerator is still working after the repair!

Far Guy is still waiting for his Medicare Card.  We were told by our local Social Security Office that Medicare was working on it.  We still have calls unreturned by the National Social Security Office that were placed a week ago…oh the wheels of government move slowly some times.  Most people have their Medicare card well before they turn 65.  We have been working with  Social Security to change our address since last August and that still hasn’t been accomplished.  So who knows how long a Medicare Card will take. 

I changed the flag outside.

Valentine Flag Far Guy entertained himself with popsicle sticks and tongue depressors this week.

Covered Bridge

He made a covered bridge for his train set.

Train goes throughthe covered bridge 

It is a great addition to his train set.  He also ordered a small attachment for the vacuum cleaner so he can dust  his train “stuff”  gently.

Our weather is turning colder…we will be below zero for the weekend.  I wish I can kept track of our sunny days this winter…I bet I could count them on one hand…what dreary days.

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Chance: The Field Report

Hiya!  It’s me again with a field report.  We went for a ride on Tuesday afternoon just before nap time.  Gotta keep these old farts on a schedule.  Ride, nap and supper.

The snow is icy and hard in the places where there is snow, we have ice too…there is two inches of snow at the snow stick.  It rained last night (Wednesday) and our walk was all icy.

A plowed field

One of the area fields…I think this one had beans in it last summer…or potatoes.  It was beans…Far Side found a photo taken in almost the same spot last August.  She must be a creature of habit too.

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The corn field

This is the neighbors corn field.  Those dots are Wild Turkeys.

44 turkeys

In the old grain field across the road from us were 44 Wild Turkeys.   I hear them gobble gobbling through our woods…they make quite a racket…and I bark at them.

Turkeys in flight

I might have rolled down my window and barked at them…then again Far Guy slowed down so Far Side could get a photo…all I know is something spooked them and made them fly back into our woods.   Might have been me…who really knows for sure?


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Wistful Wednesday :1914 Auction

A bit of Far Guys family history that took place almost 101 years ago.

Folded in half amongst Grandma Tracie’s things was the auction bill from her parents(Louis and Louisa’s) farm in Iowa.  Louis would have been 60 years old and Louisa was 54 years old at the time of the auction sale. The obituary for Louis says he came to Park Rapids in 1916…I question that…after his farm and livestock was sold why would he stay in Iowa?  Louisa’s obituary has them coming to Park Rapids in 1914.  Apparently whomever wrote the obit for Louis was in error.  Since Louisa died first in 1929 and then Louis in 1932 it was probably Emma or one of her sisters who couldn’t quite remember when.

I scanned the fragile sale bill the best I could.  They apparently had a sale and then came north to Minnesota to be near their daughters Tracie and Emma.  Tracie and Emma were both newly married to James and Rubert.
1914 Auction Bill
I will offer at Public Auction at my farm  8 miles west of Logan, 3 miles east of Readers Mill, 8 miles west of Persia.
Friday February 27, 1914
The following property, to-wit
7 head of Horses and Mules
One pair of matched Percherons, aged 5 and 6, weight 2800 lbs; one brown horse, 5 years old, weight 1300; one pair of spotted ponies, 7 years old weight 1700; one mule, weight 1050; one yearling colt.
17 Head of Cattle
Nine good milk cows, five fresh now, four fresh in the spring; five heifers coming two years old, fresh in spring; two fall calves; one Red Poll Bull, 3 years old.
24 Head Hogs
12 bred sows, good ones, farrow in April; 11 head fall shoats; one yearling boar.
One Moline wagon and bed, one truck wagon and bed, spring wagon, good 14-inch gang plow, 16-inch walking plow, 16-inch riding plow, McCormick corn binder, McCormick mower, McCormick hay rake, corn planter and 120 rods of wire, Jenny Lind cultivator, New Departure cultivator, bobsled, 3-section harrow and cart, endgate seeder, fanning mill, hog rack, feed grinder, set work harness, set driving harness.
Some stove wood, 100 bu. Early Ohio potatoes, 450 bu. Early Silver Mine Oats, 800 bu. corn, 6 1/2 tons alfalfa hay, 4 1/2 tons timothy hay, 5 doz. chickens, three ducks.
HOUSEHOLD GOODS- - - Two heating stoves, two cupboards, 8-foot table, dresser, two commodes, sofa, kitchen cabinet, two beds, and other articles.
FREE LUNCH AT NOON                                              SALE BEGINS AT 10:30 AM
  Terms: All sums of $10 and under Cash.  On sums over $10 a credit of twelve months will be given on bankable notes bearing 8 percent interest.
Louis Stuve, Prop.
Tupper and Son Aucts     B. J. Wood Clerk
The Logan Gazette, Logan Iowa
I had not heard the term shoat before, I looked it up it is a young hog that has just been weaned.

For you non farm people:
As for the hogs…they farrowed or were to give birth in April.
Coming fresh means a cow or heifer will give birth and then produce milk.  Milk Cows freshen after they have been dried up in preparation to give birth, heifers have never been bred before so they will freshen after they give birth.   Most milk cows are allowed their calf only a short time, it is put in a pen with other calves and fed with a special pail…a pail with an teat on it.  I used to feed the calves on the farm, those calves are pretty aggressive they will suck on your hands or your clothing anything that they think will give milk.

Free Lunch now that is one way to get people to the farm and keep them happy!
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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Refrigerator Drama

It is fixed, repaired.  Mr. Fixit came out right away Monday morning and after a diligent search through all the wires in the refrigerator found the problem and fixed it.  Yes his name is Mr. Fixit.

The problem was a coupler.  For some reason it went crazy arcing and eventually burned out or whatever and quit…which shut the entire fridge down.

The coupler

It didn’t look bad from the outside, the men cut it apart to see what the problem was…$90 later it was replaced and everything is working all hunky dory.  The fridge may last another fifteen years…who knows.

I do know that everything in the refrigerator freezer barely fit in our chest freezer.  We have to use up some of that frozen food.  Two people shouldn’t have that much food hoarded in reserve.  Even if we do live in Minnesota and can get stormed in for a few days.  We have soup in the pantry…we won’t starve to death.

We did get the refrigerator freezer all defrosted and cleaned out!

Far Guy breathed a sigh of relief …he was not looking forward to shopping for a new refrigerator.  Neither was I.

Social Security is slow as molasses in the winter time…no calls were returned on Monday in regard to the Medicare problem.  Why am I not surprised? 

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Monday, January 26, 2015


The time for patience has come and gone.

The all elusive Medicare Card Far Guy has been waiting for is never coming in the mail.  It seems some supervisor of another supervisor has  stacked us into some kind of immovable spot.  Someone at Social Security has to look at our file and declare it OK and push some stupid key seven times.  I think it has to do with our change of address from last August..but I am told it has nothing to do with that whole situation.  Yes we have another call into SS…seems we call them once a week and nothing happens.  We were told by one worker that we have been high priority since December 23, 2014.  How’s that grab ya?

Begonias and New Guinea Impatiens

Begonias and New Guinea Impatiens

The refrigerator quit working.

New Guinea Impatiens

New Guinea Impatiens

The refrigerator is an Amana and we have had it 15 1/2 years.  I am not certain it is worth repairing but we have a call into the repairman if it is just a relay switch it will probably be good to go for another few years.   The refrigerator just died whilst we were cooking supper.  Far Guy opened it once to get ice and when I opened it a minute later the lights were off…both of them and the compressor is not working.

What a way to start the week…they say troubles come in threes I wonder what will happen next?

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Adventures in Foods

I really tried to follow the Doctors advice and eat some yogurt.  Just the thought makes me shiver from head to toe.  Yogurt is not in the same category as cottage cheese…which is in the immediate vomit stage….gag a maggot cannot get it swallowed. 

My other baby brother and she who sees Robins first suggested the Key Lime Yogurt (Chiobani) the one with the crumble off to the side…Far Guy had one spoon full and declared it inedible, I almost finished it off…Chance really liked it.

One day I had some caramel flavored yogurt something or another it wasn’t too bad.  I must have elderly taste buds…at their advanced age they don’t like anything new.

Far Guy eats yogurt just about everyday for lunch.  He likes the plain old store brand Raspberry or Blueberry Yogurt…nothing exotic or Greek for him.

I am not very adventurous with foods…I often think it would be fun to be a food judge on one of those fancy smancy cooking shows.

Our big food adventure this week was Asparagus…I roasted them in the oven with a bit of Olive Oil and Parmesan Cheese…they were really good. But then I like asparagus.

I like mango too and they looked and felt good in the store…not squishy but firmly ripe.   I topped it off with some kiwi and it was our different fruit for the week.

I prepared French Bread to toast under the broiler…filled the whole house with smoke…Jennifer said “Just like old times Mom.”

Bottoms UpThese Mallards Ducks are “dabblers” or “surface feeders”  they can reach up to 16 inches down into the water to get grain or corn.

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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Chance: I got friends

Hiya it’s me Chance the most handsome Border Collie in Minnesota.

I had friends visiting this week.  Odda came a calling one day, I was so excited!   She never gets to stay long before her Mama shows up shaking her head.

Then I got overnight company!!


The beautiful Miss Miney who I love so much I let her be the leader of the pack.


Then there is Little Elvis…who isn’t big enough to be a leader…he follows Miney or me around.

Chance Company

We get to play ball lots when they are visiting.  Little Elvis herds whoever has the ball.  Sometimes he grabs my tail or my back leg.  Miney gives him the what for but he goes back to the same old behavior. 

Miney has the ball

It is good to have friends that lay in the snowbanks with you to cool off after playing ball. I like company.


Friday, January 23, 2015

Ducks and Swans

Finally I was almost blinded by the sun.  It hung around most of the morning yesterday and then in the afternoon it disappeared again.

Blue Sky Open water swans and ducks

We ran errand in town and then drove out to the point as our reward!

The Fish Hook River is open and the Swans and Ducks have sought refuge there.   There used to be an elderly man who fed them.  I am not so sure that is happening…I will have to ask my cousin Chuck he will know.

Mallard Ducks in the sun

Mallard Ducks, that is a male with the pretty head and the female wears her brown dress accented with  a few beautiful violet feathers on her side. (Very technical term! )


Here is a better photograph of those violet colored feathers.

Chance was a really good boy.  He rolled down his window and stuck half his body out but didn’t growl or bark…he just watched.

Young Swans

Young Swans still a dirty white color but some of their new feathers are snowy white.

Two old swans

Two older Trumpeter Swans

We watched for quite some time…beside laundry, cleaning house and running errands it was the highlight of our day.

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

For the birds

The Redpolls have found us again this winter.  They skipped last winter.   They are hungry little thistle seed eaters.  Niger Thistle Seed is just about the most expensive seed you can buy!  Of course.  It is $1.00 a pound at a local Farm Supply Store, I know it is more expensive at the specialty bird food store and the grocery stores.


They love all the feeding areas on this feeder that I purchased at Ace Hardware several years ago.

Redpoll Male

This is a male Redpoll they have a rose colored breast. They will scrounge around on the ground for seeds dropped.  I sat outside on the patio again taking photographs…looking for the sun that never appeared.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wistful Wednesday : The Farm Diaries

Our project (Transcribing his Grandparents Farm Diaries) is coming along.  Sadly we have not been able to keep up with the two month a day plan.  Life gets in the way some days.

We are both frustrated with Grandpas handwriting although Far Guy is getting better at deciphering.  I am also frustrated that Grandpa doesn’t say more about the boys…but it is a Farm Diary.

March 1918

1  Friday  Born to us Ronald, changed and covered spuds, Mrs. Stuve here

Mrs. Stuve was Grandma’s mother.

September 1919

1  Monday  Cut corn by hand Orrin helped

2  Tuesday  Got Robinsons binder it did not work Orrin cut by hand took binder to Osage

3  Wednesday  Cut corn by hand  got binder cut in PM Broke down again took to Osage

4  Thursday  Cut and shocked corn finished a field stacked clover

5  Friday  Finished clover took cream  Orrin quit  Pulled beans

Not sure who Orrin was but he quit. 

Henderson Family Farm Pic (3)

This old photo must have been taken in 1919 or 1920.

Ronald, Grandma, Grandpa and Marvin (Far Guys Dad)

We finished off 1919 the other day.

December 1919

27  Saturday  Hauled straw manure and fauder Thresa sick

28  Sunday  Home thought Thresa had small pox kids and myself went to PR with Leo and got vacinated Esta came home with us

29  Monday  Chored helped take care of Thresa hauled a load of manure

When Far Guy was reading the part about Grandma and small pox he said “OH no”  I said “Well we know it turned out okay.”  We TRY not to read ahead.

The other big thing in 1919 was telephone poles, wires and a meeting. No mention of any calls.

March 15 1919 Saturday   Hauled cut and piled wood cut some telephone poles

June 28 1919 Saturday  Set telephone poles all day

July 30 1919 Wednesday To Osage strung telephone wire

July 31 1919 Thursday Finished telephone wire hoed strawberries

August 4  1919 Monday  Took cream got telephone and put it in hoed strawberries P.D. in Ponsford   (P.D.= Played Dance)

August 16 1919  Saturday  Scaped dirt off cellar G. Dow here  telephone meeting

I try to transcribe the diary just as it is written.  The diaries span 1916 to 1929 and Grandpa writes something everyday.  Only ten more years to go.

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015


Yesterday I took the Defensive Driving Class that allows Minnesota Drivers over 55 years old to receive a 10% discount on their auto insurance.  You have to first take an eight hour class and then every three years take a four hour refresher.  This was my year.

Now I have had all the instructors in the area.  I was not impressed with the number of stories told by the old Highway Patrolman…most of the class was laughing hysterically at his jokes and stories…me not so much I was there to LEARN something.

I was not impressed with the story about the ambulance that was hit in an intersection…supposively the rig spun around and as it did the back doors flew open and the fellow that was on the gurney having a heart attack was propelled gurney and all into a field where the fellow died.  Well the last I knew from my days as an EMT the gurney is locked into place during transport….it being propelled out of an ambulance is highly unlikely…the locking mechanism must have failed.  

Nor was I entertained by the tale of the 99 mile 100 MPH high speed chase.   I don’t understand why Law Enforcement puts the general public in danger in high speed chases.

I did learn that one of our traffic laws was changed, you can accelerate 10 MPH above the 55 MPH speed limit to pass another vehicle.

It is not illegal to ride in the back of a fifth wheel trailer, a house trailer or a pickup truck…although it is pretty stupid.

I am glad to be done for another three years.  Saw some neighbors and relatives there taking the class too.


Old car at the fair last summer

I had a Parking Ticket once over at NDSU but I went by the cop shop and got it fixed.  So far I have avoided all speeding tickets..knock on wood…I do have a heavy foot sometimes.

Towanda…if I had my way anyone with a DUI would not pass go and go directly to jail for five years.  Throw away the freaking key.  The Retired Highway Patrolman said “1 out of every 3 vehicles after 12 midnight is being driven by a drunk driver.”  Now that is scary.

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Monday, January 19, 2015

Just watching birds

I bought a new very long hooky thing to hang in a tree so I could hang another feeder for the birds.  The squirrels don’t like feeders hung this way…too bad so sad.

Long Hooky thing

The long hooky thing holds the feeder in the shape of a ball that holds black sunflower seeds.  That is a Red Poll perched on the feeder.


A White Breasted Nuthatch or Assup as I call them.

Nuthatch Flying away

Assup taking off.

Red bellied woodpecker 

The Red-Bellied Woodpecker showed up too.

Chance and I watched birds for quite a while Sunday afternoon…waiting for the sun to come out. It was 30 F  here yesterday or –1C eh.  I shoveled the patio and waited but the only thing showing up was birds.  The squirrels and Wild Turkeys know when I am outside waiting for them.  Far Guy spreads corn away from all the bird feeders for the squirrels, Blue Jays and turkeys…so far it is working to keep the seven squirrels we have busy and out of the bird feeders.

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Sunday, January 18, 2015


The Border Collie shows extreme patience when we are playing ball.

The Border Collie waits

This is one of his favorite places in the yard to wait.  Partially hidden ready to pounce on the ball.  

Walks to the mail box have resumed with the warmer weather and he is thankful for that, being a creature of habit he was in a real funk when he didn’t get his morning walk.

He has patiently waited for us both to feel better and get back to the important stuff…playing ball and going for afternoon rides.  The other day when we ran errands we purposely looked for a dog in a vehicle to park next to…that really made his day…oh and at Dairy Queen that leftover bit of a cherry sundae was just for him.  

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Saturday, January 17, 2015

586 and other stuff

That is how many Shiny Brite ornaments were on the tree upstairs.   I finally got it all put away.  I am not sure if I will use the big tall tree again, I purchased a smaller tree 7 feet tall.  I am undecided…I have almost a year to make up my mind.

Blue stocking net Prussian

I frogged a scarf/cowl that I worked on last winter and was never happy with.

Weird scarf

It is some weird funky yarn with fur balls.  Maybe someday it will be something.

My other projects are all coming along.  Yesterday I sorted some more in my 11,000 bead project …a wonderful project for people with OCD…or CDO cause we like all things in  order.

Our weather has turned warm about 30F or –1C  eh during the day.  But the wind was raw.  I sat outside for awhile anyway until I couldn’t stand it anymore and Chance lost his ball in a snowbank.  There are two inches of snow at the snowstick.

Chance and his ball in a snowbank

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